#DDay70: The taking of Merville Battery (Part two)

If you think they will come when the weather is fine, take the most direct route and let you know in advance, you are wrong. The Allies will land during the worst weather, and take the longest route. The invasion will happen here in Normandy.
Fieldmarshall Erwin Rommel

During the night of the 5th to the 6th June 1944, a group of paratroopers of the 9th Battalion was dropped on the village of Barneville-la-Bertran near Honfleur. This was 20 miles away from their objective; the Merville Battery.

These men belonged to a section of the Battalion’s mortar platoon, commanded by Sergeant Edward Smith and seconded by Corporal George “Tug” Wilson.

During the morning of D-Day, villagers took four of the paras into hiding. They also gathered the heavy arms which had been dropped in containers. A few days later, resistance underground fighters moved the paras out of the village.

On the 18th and 19th June, German troops arrived in the village and arrested the inhabitants of Barneville-la-Bertran, accusing them of having helped British paratroopers. All were deported to the concentration camps of Neuengamme and Ravensbrück in Germany.

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